Seasonal Reflection:  Ordinary Time, Fall 2019

Reflecting on PeaceWhile we’re still in Ordinary Time according to the liturgical calendar, we’ve moved from summer to autumn, and that means other transitions, as well. Nighttime is now longer than daytime. Temperatures begin dropping. Leaves begin changing color and falling. And, likely, we become more active than we were when summer heat slowed us down, vacations provided a break, and even meetings went on hiatus

Certainly, even before autumn officially began, but only days before, the momentum was growing. On Friday, September 20th, in well over 100 countries across the globe, students organized a Climate Strike that sent a loud and clear message to politicians, corporate executives, and everyone else that climate change is real, it is threatening the planet and every living thing on it, and it must be stopped before we are no more. Here in New York City, at least a quarter million people marched and rallied with students leading the way. Around the world, millions lent their voices. Greta Thunberg, the 16 year old Swedish inspiration for this movement, was only one of the powerful messengers who addressed the crowd in Battery Park, NYC. She minced no words as she expressed the urgent need to DO SOMETHING to put life before profits, not just to talk, ignore, or deny.  Others shared examples of the effect climate change is already having on their homelands in places like Bangladesh, Mexico and, yes, the USA.

This could have been a depressing event, but the energy and enthusiasm, the creative signs and clever chants turned it into a celebration of hope, hope that emanates from youth who have so much to teach the rest of us about who we were and what we still can be.

Let this last half of Ordinary Time be a season of Hope, of revitalized commitment to helping make this world the beautiful, safe, secure, peaceful place God created it to be. And let’s be sure to listen, truly listen to the children and act on their lead.



Prayer for Our Earth by Pope Francis from Laudato Si’

 

All-powerful God, you are present in the whole universe and in the smallest of your creatures.
You embrace with your tenderness all that exists.
Pour out upon us the power of your love,
that we may protect life and beauty.

Fill us with peace, that we may live
as brothers and sisters, harming no one.
O God of the poor,
help us to rescue the abandoned and forgotten of this earth, so precious in your eyes.
Bring healing to our lives,
that we may protect the world and not prey on it,
that we may sow beauty, not pollution and destruction. Touch the hearts
of those who look only for gain
at the expense of the poor and the earth.
Teach us to discover the worth of each thing,
to be filled with awe and contemplation,
to recognize that we are profoundly united
with every creature
as we journey towards your infinite light.
We thank you for being with us each day.
Encourage us, we pray, in our struggle
for justice, love and peace.



Suggested Actions

  • - Take to heart the pleas of our youth to take action to protect God’s precious creation. Learn the science. Believe the science. Make environmentally responsible behavior the norm, whether it’s using less, reusing more, recycling whatever can be recycled, walking when possible, choosing public transportation when available, eating more fruits and vegetables and less meat, and so much more. While little things alone may not seem powerful, a whole population living conscientiously can have a major impact.

  • - As always and with every important issue, sign petitions, write letters, make phone calls, and vote with climate change in mind and environmental justice a priority.

    - Join rallies, marches, and protests. Put your body on the line to show your support for God’s creation.

  • - Join and stay on top of things through PCMNY’s email action alert network and online at our: website, Facebook page, and Twitter account.

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Reflection Archives

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